Monday, 29 November 2010

Sunday 28/11/2010 - Carps AC Autumn Silvers League - Viaduct Fishery - Final Round Six

The day started well enough all though it was bloody freezing. With Bela arriving dead on time as usual. In the two years we have been travelling together Bela has only arrived late once – by 1 minute! Things started to go bad once we made the decision to try Shipham café again – enough said.

Somewhere between Glastonbury and Somerton a Black Cat decided to commit suicide under Bela’s van. The Cat got both front and back wheels. I am a bit superstitious (under statement) I said straight away that we might as well turn round and go home – no way was I going to do any good after that. However, I was a bit concerned about the feline population of Somerset because if we both picked up coin then Bela would be looking to flatten a Cat every week.

On quick inspection both Campbell and Carey lakes were partly frozen it was particularly bad at the Carp Park ends. So need to draw well away from this end then. Bela had a brilliant draw peg 124 with 123 not being in. The peg was ice free in so far as he could fish a waggler to the middle. Me, well I drew my nightmare peg 110 on Campbell. It’s furthest peg from ice free water. Steve Long promised me it would me clear by 11 o clock – NOT. A good test to determine ice thickness is to feed some casters and see if the Mallards can skate on it (see top picture right). I tried cup tapping to break the ice but it was too thick for that and had to employ my ice breaker. I cleared the inside down to the stump and two swims at 12 metres (length of my breaker rope) about 2 metres a part. I then lent it to my neighbour Steve Jackson on peg 111. I only set up one rig a 4 x12 Jolly which could be used in both long swims with a 2 inch adjustment. I didn’t bother to set up one for the margin as it was already starting to refreeze. The left hand swim was for dry GB and Pinkie and the other for caster. From the start I had problems with the ice as the air temperature was well below freezing and both swims were quickly re-freezing. Which necessitated Steve and I to keep clearing ice every hour or so throughout the match. Not conducive for catching fish I think. The picture right shows my top set and how it had froze in the air. At one time Steve and I were getting false bites because the ice had built up on our back shots. I was right even though I did anticipate catching a fish in the dying minutes the whole section blanked. One fish would have put me on 8 points and joint first overall in the league. I wasn’t to be – and that’s fishing and why we keep coming back. All the fish on Campbell were caught in the top pegs on waggler. It was a similar story on Carey. Bela was explaining on the way home how he was shaking off little nuisance Ronnie’s, should have fished for them matey. Bela was a bit miffed that I picked up £14 - my share of the section - the Cats were bloody lucky as Bela was one out of a pick up too!!

The match was won by Nick Collins (pictured right) on peg 118 with 6lb 7oz. Nick caught one of each species Tench, Perch, Hybrid, Skimmer and a Roach. Nick caught on the waggler fishing either Pinkie or red maggot on the hook feeding about 30 caster throughout the match.

The league was won by Steve Long (pictured lower right) with 8 points, but only just, piping Marks Broomsgrove on weight. Well done matey, a well dissevered result.

I have a couple of tips for fishing in this bad weather. I purchased a pair of neoprene gloves called ICEBEHR. They really are excellent for pole fishing in these conditions. The other tip was given to my by Nick Collins. As us gentleman know our willies’ are hard to find in extreme cold conditions, particularly under many layers of clothes. Therefore it’s very important not to leave peeing too late. What Nick recommends tying a piece of 6lb Maxima around his bell end and leave the other end hanging out of the top of his zip (no pictures of this one). Nick has tried various line types and advised against using Preston Direct Mono!!

Full Result (on the day):

1. Nick Collins 6-07-0 peg 118
2. John Green 5-08-0 peg
3. Nigel Easton 5-0-0 peg
4. Mark Broomsgrove 4-03-0 peg 119
5. Bela Bakos 3-06-0 peg 124
6. Dick Bull 2-12-0 peg 127

Final league:
1. Steve Long 9 pts 98-13-0

2. Mark Broomsgrove 9 pts 87-09-0
3. Steve Jackson 10 pts 66-09-0
4. John Green 10 pts 60-02-0
5. Nigel Easton 10 pts 57-02-0
6. Nicky Collins 11 pts 61-13-0
7. Mike Nicholls 11 pts 54-13-0
8. Dan (Dude) Squires 11 pts 53-14-0

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Thursday 25/11/2010 - Bathampton Over 55's - Bridge Pool

I think the Coffin Dodgers were all wondering which charity to give their heating allowance to that was until today. It was perishing cold with a hard over night frost to contend with. I was hoping to draw in the sun; however, it wasn’t to be I pulled out peg 32. These pegs along this bank don’t see the sun all day this time of year, because of this the pegs can hold Silvers if it is bright. Today I had John Smith as company – he doesn’t look old enough to have retired, more of him later. I set up the usual 4x16 Jolly to be fished down the inside shelf at 7.5 metres scaled down to an 808 18 hook for single maggot. I also set up a CW&C rig for the LH margin for the Perch if it got hard. On the all in I fed one ball of GB laced with dead red maggot on the silvers line and a tiny amount of the messy business in to the margin. Starting on the 7.5 metres line it took about five minutes before I had my first Skimmer, followed by a few small Ronnie’s. I then foul hook a Carp which slipped free. Next cast I hook and land a 6lb Carp, lets hope that the last of them - not. I then started to top up with dead red maggot through the kinder pot and had a good run on the Silvers landing Skimmers to 1 ½ lb, Perch and Ronnie’s.

I then hook another Carp and all the signs were it was foul hooked near the anal fin as it took off with the usual rattle when hooked in this area. It swam directly to John Smiths swim and float and sure enough John thought he had a bite and struck. I shouted out that it was my fish he had struck at and John said “do what you need to”, so with both elastics now heading to the corner of the island it was obvious John was over my line (so I thought). After about ten seconds my hook pulled free as it straightened. However, John was still attached to it. John played it for about fifteen minutes landing a personal best Carp of 16lb 4oz (pictured right with a proper smile). The Carp was foul hooked under the chin. John and I agreed on a 90% - 10% split in his favour however the scales man didn’t agree! Well done John it couldn’t have happened to a nicer person.

After a few more small Skimmers I hooked a whopping Common Carp and it wasn’t going to come in easy, the first attempt to land it failed because the line had gone round its pectoral fin and it was easy for it to swim out of the landing net. I played it for another five minutes and suddenly it was gone including my complete rig – a catastrophic failure of one of my rig – surely not. On inspection there was no sign of breakage it appeared that the line had slipped over the Dacron knot. I got up to find another rig and found my original rig behind me. On inspection everything was intact. What had happened the hook had pulled with the energy stored in the elastic had some how managed to release the connection to the Dacron. – Blimey that’s a first for me.

I tried the margin with worm and maggot which resulted in two 2oz Perch. At least with this species you get a bite straight off, so you know when they are about.

For the next hour I shivered and really struggled for any indication at all, it wasn’t until the last twenty minutes that the Ronnie’s showed up most probably because the light was starting to go. I had a Ronnie every put in until I hooked and landed another 6lb Carp. My Silvers weighed in at 11lb 8oz and my two Carp went 13lb 10oz. This put me first in the Silvers and second overall with 25lb 2oz.

The match was won by Andy Shield (pictured right with the Silvers winner - someone smaller than me for once) with 33lb from peg 6. Andy caught three Carp fishing triple red maggot. Andy fished this over potted red maggot and hemp seed. Well done matey for your first win in the CD’s.

Full Result:

1. Andy Shields 33-0-0 peg 6

2. Mike Nicholls 25-02-0 peg 32
3. John Smith 23-02-0 peg 31
4. Bryan Sheppard 15-07-0 peg 11
5. Chris Rolfe 10-12-0 peg 14
6. Bob Price 9-09-0 peg 18

Top Silvers:

1. Mike Nicholls 11-08-0 peg 32
2. Terry Bruton 8-06-0 peg 24
3. John Smith 6-12-0 peg 31

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Wednesday 24/11/2010 - Carps AC - Christmas Match - Plantation Fishery

The Royal Wedding has been confirmed as 29 April 2011 and a bank holiday decreed. The Special One is already planning for it, as I am. I will be doing the same thing as the last Royal wedding – going fishing.

Plantation has a good head of both Carp and Silvers (particularly Ronnie’s) and is a venue I always look forward to. Unfortunately the banks are not what you would expect from a commercial fishery. I drew peg 7 and it took me 20 minutes to find a suitable position for my seat box, when I did it was under a tree and on some soft bank. It was difficult and uncomfortable to say the least. The picture top right say’s it all. But the irony is that the car park has a mound of chippings, if the owner had provided a wheel barrow and shovel I would have been happy to have back filled the swim, however, there would have been a queue. Come on fishery owner sort this easy one out.

I set up one Skimmer rig a 4x14 Jolly to be fished at 11.5 metres in 3 foot of water at 2 o clock and 10 o clock where it was 3 inches deeper. The lake gets deeper the further to the left you go. I also set up two Ronnie rigs one shallow and the other at full depth. On the all in put in two 125ml cups of GB in at 2 o clock and some micro and 2 mm expander on the other skimmer line. I started on double dead red over the GB whilst loose feeding the
Ronnie line with caster. I caught small Ronnie’s straight away, plus a bonus 1 ½ lb Skimmer. However, I thought the long pole was a bit too slow for catching any numbers of Ronnie so decided to switch to the shallow Ronnie rig, which accounted for nought. I added the 3 inches and put on a 4 mm expander and caught more small Ronnie’s – not going to plan as I did expect to catch a few Crucians on this line. So I tried the full depth Ronnie rig and caught Ronnie’s to 8oz for about an hour, after which it slowed so I had another round on the GB and pellet lines with just a few Ronnie’s and a couple of 4 oz Skimmers to show for it. So I decided to persevere with the full depth Ronnie rig to the end, however, the fish kept disappearing. Once the light started to go (last 15 minutes of the match) I had a 2lb Skimmer and a 1 lb Ronnie. I was hampered all match by the tree I was sat under, catching it at least ten times and having to climbing up it once to retrieve my rig – to Charlie Barns amusement. I must have retied a new hook half a dozen times. I weighed 15lb 7oz for 5th in the Silvers, that bloody tree costing me coin as I was 5oz out from picking up coin!

The match and the Silvers were won by Tom Thick (pictured upper right with his Silvers catch) with 98lb 2oz from peg 17. Tom caught on his usual soft pellet over pellet fished at 13 metres out in front.

As Tom took the over match the Silvers went to Rich Coles (pictured right with his catch) with 23lb 8oz of Skimmers and Crucians from peg 13. Rich fished similar to tom with soft pellet hook bait.

As I said I was pushed out of the Silvers by 5oz by Mike Owens who weight was helped by three big Perch. The pictured lower right shows Mike hiding the tail of his biggest - a near 3 pounder – nice fish.

Full Result:

1. Tom Thick 98-02-0 peg 17
2. Chris Davis 83-11-0 peg 8
3. Derek Vowles 42-08-0 peg 5
4. Rich Coles 29-12-0 peg 13
5. Bill Ferris 22-02-0 peg 3
6. Leyton Palmer 20-13-0 peg 25

Top Silvers:

1. Tom Thick 36-08-0 peg 17

2. Rich Coles 23-08-0 peg 13
3. Steve Dawson 16-10-0 peg 29

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Sunday 21/11/2010 - South West Teams of Four - Viaduct Fishery - Final Round Six

What’s good about team fishing is that you can’t get ridiculed for drawing a flyer. Or can you? Fate put me on peg 85 apparently the best Carp peg in the southern hemisphere. Having a quick chat around and I discovered that Dave Roper was on peg 86 the previous day and caught 25lb of Silvers on the waggler with caster, hooking the occasional Carp. That will do me then. Arriving at my peg I found myself sandwiched between the second best angler in the South West Rip Off and the best in the SW and future world champion Des Shipp. I knew Rip Off would find it difficult to compete from peg 81 (so long as I could keep him out of my swim) as it has variable form, but Des, well end of story really.

I untangled the Silvers waggler and the Carp Slaying straight lead (just for team orders). And because there was plenty of time I also set up a 4x14 Jolly to be fished at 11.5 metres I was surprised how deep the lake is at this end. At this stage Des started to do a dance on the bank as he had forgotten his waggler rod, he paced off for 10 minutes and came back with Neil Mercers waggler rod a 12 and a bit footer as apparently there was nine inches missing from the tip (good one Neil – but not good enough).

I started buy cupping in 100 ml of casters at 11.5 metres which I only ventured over with double caster for 5 minutes – end of. I started on the waggler with double dead red fished over loose fed caster – loose being the operative description because the casters were going everywhere. I was soon in to my first Ruff – a male of the species – one point then. I quickly followed this up with a female – much easier to unhook. Next I believe I foul hooked a Carp which I played for about one minute before the hook pulled free. I then hooked and landed a 9lb Carp. I then definitely foul hooked another Carp which I tried to stop going through Des’s swim breaking me so I took the opportunity to up the hook length to 0.16 from my favourite 0.14 G Line, plus reducing the hook size to an 18 - 808. Next fish was another 9lb Carp that would not lift its head and was difficult to play out I thought for a long while it was one of the lake beasties. That was it for the Carp as I think they had had enough of me and backed off to the end of the spit. Good, as I started to put a few Silvers together, Skimmers to 2lb, but they were far and few between. At 2 minutes to 3 o clock I decided to fish the lead for 7 minutes, Starting on four dead reds - nothing – switched to corn – time up and back on the Silvers waggler, landing another 1lb Skimmer and loosing a 2lb Skimmer on the whistle. My two Carp weighed in at 19lb 3oz and my Silvers 9lb 7oz putting me 6th overall and 6th in the Silvers – not quite good enough.

Although we gave him half a rod and reel line that was 2 mm thick Des (pictured right with half his catch of nine Carp) still won the match from peg 86 with 70lb 4oz. Des fished the straight lead for an hour and had one Carp on corn, subsequently switching to the waggler fished at 40 yards where he caught another seven Carp. Des caught mostly on corn hook bait with the odd fish falling to maggot. Des fished at variable depths with most fish coming shallow (half depth). Des had a similar experience to me with the fish backing off out of reach. Des fed very little because the furthest we could feed was 25 yards.

The Silvers was won by Paul Elmes (pictured right) from Spring Lake peg 24 with 21lb 8oz. Paul caught Skimmers at 14.5 metres on double red maggot fished over GB.

This was the end of the series and I thought it was well run by Rip Off and manic Mallin - they make a good team, thanks guys.

Team wise Team Westerleigh (pictured right) won the overall league by a big margin – see Tony Rixon’s blog for the ins and outs. Well done lads - the team to beat – again!

Full Result:
1. Des Shipp 70-04-0 peg 86
2. Neil Mercer 62-01-0 peg 8
3. John Howell 59-10-0 peg 18
4. Ryan Shipp 42-08-0 peg 15
5. Dean Mallin 40-07-0 peg 78
6. Mike Nicholls 28-10-0 peg 85

Top Silvers:
1. Paul Elmes 21-08-0 peg 24

2. Matt Parsons 15-13-0 peg 7
3. Tony Rixon 11-0-0 peg 81

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Saturday 20/11/2010 - Hillview Open

I had a phone call from son Steve on Friday tempting me to fish Hillview. I wasn’t keen as I had already fished three matches this week and again this Sunday. However, The Special one persuaded me to go. On arrival we had our usual bacon and egg toasty followed by a walk round the lakes. Heron was bright green and Moorhen gin clear. So which one to draw – don’t ask me as Heron would have been my choice but last week the lake was won with 11lb! Any way the draw hat would decide. So in I go and out comes peg 5 on Moorhen – Clear Lake is was to be. Steve drew behind me on peg 38 on the Green Lake. I set up a 0.2 gram corn float for the margin down to peg 2 pallet (without high expectations). Then I set up the usual 4x14 Jolly to fish at 7.5 metres at 10 o clock. I choose this line because the wind was blowing into me at 2 o clock and it was a bitter cold North Easterly. I noticed there were a lot of fish showing around the island opposite peg 7. I noticed that anglers were setting up the straight lead, which is unusual for this venue. I started on the corn over a dash of micro and corn – nothing. I tried allsorts of baits and couldn’t buy a bite. I switched to single caster over caster and started to catch Perch to 1lb. I kept trying the corn but to no avail. I did have a little try down to the pallet where I had some knocks from Ronnie’s. I stayed on the caster at 7.5 metres until the end as the only anglers catching were on the lead fishing towards the island and I was hoping that they would frame. With half hour to go I decided to throw the towel as Steve behind me had been catching well on corn throughout and I watched him. I weighed 12lb 7oz of Perch for 8th overall. Steve (pictured right landing his last fish dead on the whistle – in the dark) finished 2nd overall with 58lb 6oz and a pick up of £56. It was good to see that I have weaned Steve off the Chianti on to the Jolly. Steve fished a 4x16 at 13 metres and 5 metres with corn over corn.

The match was won by Gerry Tweed (pictured right – again in the dark) from peg 7 with 75lb 4oz. Gerry fished hair rigged corn on the straight lead 1 metre off the opposite island.

Full Result:
1. Gerry Tweed 75-04-0 peg 7
2. Steve Nicholls 58-06-0 peg 38
3. Shaun Wilson 41-0-0 peg 35
4. Richard Ahearn 37-06-0 peg 22
5. Andy Griffiths 24-14-0 peg 29
6. Bob Ginster 17-06-0 peg 2

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Mike Jones has published the 2011 Coffin Dodgers match dates which follow (all Thursday's):

Mike Jones has published the 2011 Coffin Dodgers match dates which follow (all Thursday's):

Bridge 31/03/2011
Bridge 14/04/2011
Withy 28/04/2011
Bridge 12/05/2011
Withy 26/05/2011
Bridge 09/06/2011
Withy 23/06/2011
Bridge 07/07/2011
Bridge 21/07/2011
Withy 04/08/2011
Bridge 18/08/2011
Bridge 01/09/2011
Withy 15/09/2011
Bridge 29/09/2011
Bridge 13/10/2011
Withy 27/10/2011
Bridge 10/11/2011
Withy 24/11/2011
Bridge 08/12/2011
Bridge 12/12/2011

The other important piece of information is that the Coffin Dodgers 2010 Christmas Match draw will be at 08:00 sharp.Back to today. Apparently the Coffin Dodgers now have a swear box deducting 1lb of your weight for every naughty word. There were a few DNW’s today!!

In to the draw side tray and out comes peg 50. Umm, a noted Carp peg with little Silvers history. In fact the peg is Bob Price’s favourite, who generally elects to fish the waggler on top the bar off the end of the island. So with this in mind I set up one Silver fish rig – 4x16 Jolly and a 0.3 gram Corn Float set to 3 foot. I started by cupping in four balls of GB at 2 o clock at 10 metres followed up with three balls by hand as a bit of advertising (I keep imagining this heap of ground bait in a 6 inch circle). Anyway it woke up Mike Jones (pictured right focused on the job in hand) on the opposite peg 58 who I had to look at all match. I followed up by feeding a few grains of corn and caster at 13 metres over to the island in 3 foot of water. Starting on the single maggot over the GB I had small Ronnie’s from the off (1 – 2oz). These must be the evicted Ronnie’s from Bridge – second class citizens then. I did have the very occasional 3 oz fish – Ronnie’s and Hybrids. Everyone seemed to be catching a similar stamp of fish. I had a quick look on the corn on the Carp line with double maggot which resulted in another 1oz Ronnie. So back on the Silvers line where I kept them coming until the last 1 ½ hours when I decided to give the Carp a real go to the end, after all Bob Price wouldn’t forgive me if I didn’t. So out I go with single corn kinder potting in three grains of corn with caster. First put in I foul hook a small Carp which came off. Next cast I hook and land a 12 oz Perch – unusual on corn. I then hooked and landed a 3lb Mirror Carp followed by another foul hooker. After a quiet spell I did land another Carp, a 4lb Common. My Silvers weighed in at 7lb 1oz and the two Carp 7lb 10oz for an overall weight of 14lb 11oz. This put me sixth in the Silvers and first overall. I was the only angler today to catch Carp.

The Silvers was won by Steve Jefferies with 11lb 6oz from peg 47. Steve caught on both pole and GB feeder, his weight being boosted by a feeder caught 3 ½ lb Bream.

The pictured right shows the overall winner and not a vagrant living rough at Huntstrete as one might think, but the Millionaire and Silvers winner Steve Jefferies. So if you don’t know what a millionaire looks like you do now. The smile says it all!!

Full Result:

1. Mike Nicholls 14-11-0 peg 50

2. Steve Jefferies 11-04-0 peg 47
3. Mike Jones 9-11-0 peg 58
4. Rich Coles 9-0-0 peg 49
5. Bill Ferries 8-13-0 peg 45
6. Terry Bruton 8-08-0 peg 62

Top Silvers:

1. Steve Jefferies 11-04-0 peg 47
2. Mike Jones 9-11-0 peg 58
3. Rich Coles 9-11-0 peg 49

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Wednesday 17/11/2010 - Carps AC - Bullocks Farm - Match Lake

Whilst eating one of Karen’s OK breakfasts the “Gardener” (Phil’s son) came in to collect the peg fee as Phil was spending a few days in Rome. It’s the first time I have seen him. There was some discussion on which pegs should be in or out. The “Gardener” (sorry don’t know his name) suggested we didn’t put peg 7 in the draw as it is full of rubbish. Someone shouted out “Well get it out then”! Umm.

There were fourteen booked in and with two no-shows which amounted to the ideal no of anglers on Match Lake under present fishing form. In to the draw bag and out comes peg 22. I have drawn this peg a many times and know it well. On arriving at the peg I noticed that the water was very clear – in fact no colour at all, which is very unusual for this venue. Apparently its to do with the weed killer used on the reeds. The other observations were that the water level looked to be up to its winter level, plus I had a new platform. Unfortunately it appears to be built 3 inches below the water level; thankfully I had my boots on. The wind was blowing quite strong from right to left, add the rain and I was in for an uncomfortable day. However, one of the pluses was that the wind would give a bit of cover over the clear water. As the water was so clear I decided not to fish the margins, which can be good on this peg. Particularly the LH side. So I only set up the one rig a 4x12 Jolly to be fished in the open water at 12 o clock. I plumbed around and found the deepest part of the peg was at 1 metre, with it shallowing the further I went out. Obviously this was far too short to fish today and decided on 6.5 metre line. As I thought it would be a hard match I also decided to stay with the one line as I didn’t want to split the fish. I started by feeding a small amount of wetted micro (scrounged from Dave Wride and Steve Dawson as I had left mine home bringing 8’s by mistake). I used both 2 and 3 mm expander on a 16 808 hook. I initially found it very difficult to present the bait primarily due to the wind. I readjusted the back shot many times to try and get the balance right. I soon had four Crucians in the net but found that due to the water clarity the fish would scare off for about 15 minutes before returning. After netting about nine Crucians I had what appeared to be a typical slow Bream bite and I was right as a 3 ½ lb specimen ended up in the net. As planned I stayed on this line all match adding fish in pairs with fishless periods. The last two Crucians were 2 pounders which were in excellent condition. I weighed 18lb 9oz for 1st in the match and 1st in the Silvers. However, I did think Andy Curry (pictured right with a bag of Crucians) on peg 17 had beaten me hands down so I was surprised to find I had piped him by 1lb 7oz. Andy’s weight put him 2nd overall and 2nd in the Silvers – well done matey.

No matter how, lets say “untidy” the fishery is, it still remains for me the best Crucian venue in the South West and that has to be good.

Full Result:
1. Mike Nicholls 18-09-0 peg 22

2. Andy Curry 17-02-0 peg 17
3. Pete Sivell 9-12-0 peg 25
4. Dave Wride 8-08-0 peg 30
5. Paul Lock 5-02-0 peg 27
6. Bill Ferris 3-08-0 peg 18

Top Silvers:

1. Mike Nicholls 18-09-0 peg 22
2. Andy Curry 13-04-0 peg 17

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Sunday 14/11/2010 - Carps AC Autumn Silvers League - Viaduct Fishery - Round Five

Bela and I stopped at Budgens for breakie, 1 ½ breakfast baguettes each – scrummy. Unfortunately the drinks machine was broke again, so we had to wait until we got to Viaduct before we had a wet. The BBC weather people are now really pissing me off, forecast the odd light shower --- and it rained all day with the occasion heavy down pour!!! I was surprised to find that we were to fish a full six hour match finishing in the dark and cold at 16:15 – too late for me.

Once I had heard that Spring Lake was to have three sections I was sure I would draw either pegs 2 or 3. these pegs seem to stick to my hand. And out comes peg 3!! I have yet to fish Campbell in this league. I was told by Steve and Paul that pegs 1, 2 and 3 were fished the day before and all caught Ronnie’s up to 1 ½ lb, with 25 lb being the highest weight – lovely me thinks, that will do me. I set up two Ronnie whips – 4 metre and 3 metre to solely fish the caster, plus a 4x12 Jolly with a yellow tip to fish just in to the dark zone for Skimmers at 11.5 metres. On the whistle I cupped in three Tangerine balls of GB laced with live Pinkies on the Skimmer line. I started by fishing the 3 metre whip shallow with single caster over loose fed caster and immediately had a swirly indication – umm some Ronnie about then - under the float goes and I am latched into Carp which I hung to for 1 minute in case it was a 10lb Ronnie, that was until it broke me!!! Tried the 4 metre whip at full depth, but with no further indications I gave up on the Ronnie’s. Out to 11.5 metre with double dead red and I caught twenty or so small Skimmers (2 to 4 oz). After an hour the swim completely died, so out with some more Pinkie laced GB. But it really didn’t turn it back on – I wish now I had fed more at the start. Looking around my section no one was catching. So the only option left for me was to set up the waggler. I knew it would be important to keep the loose feed tight so decided to fed six casters regularly for accuracy (any more casters would flare off in all directions). I fished double dead red on the hook and had an 8oz Skimmer first cast so I upped the feed, which was a mistake as I hooked and landed a 10 lb Carp. I eased off the feed and kept the odd Skimmer coming to the end. I reckon I had 5lb on the pole, with a similar amount coming on the waggler. I weighed 10lb 5oz (no Ronnie’s) for a section win and 10th overall.

By the time the all out was sounded it was so dark and the only thing I could see was Chris Davis on peg 20 with his fluorescent coat on!!

The Silvers van went home happy (£120 happy) as Bela also won his section from peg 9 with 14lb 3oz (nearly 10lb clear of runner up Mark Broomsgrove). Oh yes Bela broke his pole again (no six section this time) I will have to get some special foam gloves for him.

The match was won by Matt Parsons (pictured right) from peg 19 with 33lb 11oz. Matt caught the majority of his Skimmers on the pole fishing caster, maggot or pinkie over GB – FI and Gimps Gold. Matt occasionally rested his pole line by adopting the waggler off the end of the island, picking up the odd bigger Skimmer with a smattering of Carp!!

Isn’t it amazing, Spring Lake was drained down, fish removed, dredged out and refilled with water and the same fish, only for them all to return to the same pegs.

Full Result:
1. Matt Parsons 33-11-0 peg 19

2. Steve Jackson 22-07-0 peg 127
3. Rich Coles 19-06-0 peg 123
4. Steve Long 16-13-0 peg 18
5. Chris Davis 16-0-0 peg 20
6. Nigel Easton 15-11-0 peg 128

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Wednesday 10/11/2010 - Carps AC - Boyd Valley Lake

I wasn’t sure I would be able to fish as yesterday snot was streaming down my nose. As the lake was sold out and the weather promised to be bright and sunny I was dead keen to fish, so I decided to get up an hour earlier to see if I could get myself motivated in time. I did have a reasonable night sleep and didn’t feel too bad, albeit a bit slow to get going.

There was only one no show and that was Leyton Palmer who had a bloody good reason, he was in hospital having suffered a heart attack. By my reckoning Leyton must have been suffering a heart attack at Cider Farm last week and still managed to weigh in 124lb of Carp– cripes, this must be a first. Get well soon matey.

I pulled out peg 9 which meant I would have the sun in my eyes for the first few hours. However, you do get the red carpet treatment on this peg. Someone has put a large piece of Axminster down as protection from the mud. I’m not sure what the original colour was but its bright red now! The water level is up about 18 inches so I was able sit on top of the bank. I set up two Ronnie rigs and 1 Skimmer rig a 4x16 Jolly to be fished at 10 metres down the inside shelf. I decided to feed four tangerine balls of GB over this line to fish maggot, caster or soft pellet. But I was never to find out whether this line worked or not as I never fished it. Because of the sun I started on the top set with Ronnie rig one, a 4x14 PB14 (modified) using caster hook bait over loose fed caster. I caught quality Ronnie’s to 12oz from the start, but would loose them from time to time. I put this down to feeding too much inviting the Carp in have a look. After two hours I switched to Ronnie rig two - a “to hand rig”, with a home made float fished on a 3 metres Drennan whip (flick tip). I basically kept the Ronnie’s coming, again losing them if I over did the feed. In the last ten minutes I decided to up the caster feed finnishing off my 3/4 of a pint to try my theory wrt Carp. And yes I hooked and landed a 6lb 2oz Mirror on 0.1 line and flick tip. My Ronnie’s (pictured right) weighed in at 28lb 2oz totalling 34lb 4 oz including the one Carp. This put me first in the match and first in the Silvers.

I’m glad I made the effort as I had a memorable days Ronnie fishing, plus I didn’t sneeze all day.

Runner up in both the Silvers and overall was Steve Dawson on peg 11 with 18lb 8oz of Silvers and a total of 21lb 3oz mainly made up of Chub, which Steve caught on the maggot feeder fished over to the island.

Full Result:

1. Mike Nicholls 34-04-0 peg 9
2. Steve Dawson 21-03-0 peg 11
3. Kevin Dicks 19-02-0 peg 1
4. Bob Price 18-05-0 peg 4
5. Chris Davis 18-04-0 peg 6
6. Andy Gard 17-12-0 peg 5

Top Silvers:

1. Mike Nicholls 28-02-0 peg 9
2. Steve Dawson 18-08-0 peg 11
3. Chris Davis 16-0-0 peg 6

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Sunday 07/11/2010 - South West Teams of Four - Bullocks Farm - Round Five

About eight months ago I asked Bob Gullick to get me a Garbolino fishing cap, which has a hat clip on the back. I am continually losing mine to the wind. Bob promised he would sort one out for me. And today, the first time I have seen him since then was for Bob to hand over that hat - thanks Bob - a man true to his word.

Bela and I were first in the queue for Breakie at Bullocks Farm Café. I must say it was much better than Shipham. With Charlie working, hence not available (I thought he had retired – or was it retarded) Tom Thick stood in as captain, until he had to count the money – that was left to me!

With two sections on Match Lake, one on both North Pool and Rushcombe, it was a complete turn round to the scramble for Match Lake as everyone wanted to be pegged on Rushcombe – including me, but only for the colourful Silvers. Well only 11 could draw here and in our team that was left for Rich Coles which was fancied end peg 22 – I gave him my thoughts on how I would approach the peg which unfortunately for me he followed. I was on North Pool 6 which I was told was good for Carp in the LH margin at 3 metres with caster fished over caster. However, Nick Collins gave me a good tip, which was to start at 5 metres down the track with Maggot over GB.

Having settled in my peg along comes Rip Off who had drawn the peg 12 which was directly behind me. Now I think Left handed anglers should be made to ship left handed at all times and not swap around because it suits them. I lost count the number of times Rip Off’s pole jabbed me in the ribs, at one time I thought of confiscating his butt section as it was technically in my swim. What a bloody untidy angler he is, with tackle strewn everywhere. I got him back by putting my used banana skin in his net bag, that will make things smell a little better!

I set up three rigs: 1x 4x12 Jolly for the Silver for fishing expander pellet, maggot, etc… (I did bring some Pinkies - Chris Fox would be proud - which stayed in the bait bag). A 0.250 gram Drennan Carbo and finally a Drennan wire stem Chop which suited both and far margins. I started as Nick suggest but feeding Micro instead of GB at 5 metres and first put in on the Carbo with single maggot I had an 8lb Carp, followed soon after with a 4lb Carp. I then lost a foul hooked fish followed by an 8oz Crucian. The swim then died. But what I didn’t know was that Matt Tainton on peg 16 had lost a top set complete with a 10lb Carp. This Carp plus top set apparently swam all round the snake lake up to Pete Sivell’s swim who nearly landed both top set and Carp. The fish then swam all the way back, going through my swim twice!! I had been feeding caster in to the LH margin and decided to give that a go, but there was no sign of life there, I did try it from time to time with various baits but to no avail. I must say the far bank looked a banker for some Carp later, especially the Duck run. I opened a new swim at 11.5 metres down the track to my left, in line with empty pallet peg 7. I kinder potted in 2mm expander to fish either 4mm or 2mm expander over this feed. Straight away I knew there were a few Crucians about but they really wanted the hook bait moving on the drop, to which I obliged them catching twenty or so before giving the far bank a try. The upshot was that this hour was completely wasted as I didn’t have bite on any of the baits I tried. I just couldn’t understand why. I spent the last half hour back on the Crucians landing another four plus a 2lb Carp. I now wish I stuck with the Silvers throughout. However, I wouldn't have been saying that if I had one more Carp as I would have picked up in both pools! My Crucians weighed in at 18lb 11oz and my three Carp 14lb 2oz for a total of 32lb 13oz. This put me fourth overall and second in the Silvers by 8oz (one more Crucian) - bugger.

The team came a credible joint third with 28 points. I am sure it wasn't anything to do with Charlie not being there!

The match was won by Pete Sivell (pictured right receiving a shiny £1 coin form runner up Phil Harding who was on next peg North Pool 2) from NP peg 4 with 40lb 15oz. Pete caught nine Carp in his LH margin fished about 1 metre from the bank side edge fishing double red maggot over caster.

The Silvers was won by, you guessed it Rich Coles with 19lb 3oz from Rushcombe peg 22. Rich fished single red over micro alternating between three swims.

Oh, yes Rip Off could only manage 4 points from a possible 11 from peg 12, but believe it or not he won our section by TRIPLE default - how jammy is that!!

Full Result:

1. Pete Sivell 40-15-0 peg 4 NP
2. Phil Harding 37-0-0 peg 2 NP
3. Dean Mallin 35-0-0 peg 30 Match
4. Mike Nicholls 32-13-0 peg 6 NP
5. Matt Tainton 30-09-0 peg 16 NP
6. Dave Roper 26-14-0 peg 15 Rush

Top Silvers:
1. Rich Coles 19-03-0 peg 22 Rush

2. Mike Nicholls 18-11-0 peg 6NP

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Thursday 04/11/2010 - Bathampton Over 55's - Bridge Pool

The talk before the match was whether the Coffin Dodgers could get through the electrically timed gates before they closed at 16:30, because the match was planned to finish at 15:15. Well we only just made it with 10 minutes to spare. Bathampton AA 17:00 would be a much better closing time – remember we are old, decrepit and disabled!

What a plonker, I put the camera battery on charge last night and forgot to put it back in the camera. I found this out when I wanted to take a picture of Andrew Shields new lake record Perch of 1lb 11oz. However, Ian Sheppard came to the rescue with his phone camera. So pictured right is Andy with his Perch (Andy is the one in glasses). Terry Burton’s record Perch of 1lb 9oz lasting just one week!!

Everyone is amazed how mild the weather is with 13 degrees at 08:00 this morning. Mike Jones was collecting the dosh for the Coffin Dodgers Xmas match today – it looks like a sell out so book early with your £15.

In to Colin's smelly bait tray and out comes peg 16. It’s a great peg on its day for both Carp and Silvers. Arriving at the peg I noticed that the water was very clear, so the margins for me was a no go zone. I set a 4x16 Jolly to be fished at full depth at 5 metres for the Silvers (Skimmers) and a 0.4 gram corn float to be fished short off the opposite island in three foot of water for the Carp. I started by feeding the corn swim with some micro and corn followed up with four tangerine sized balls of GB at 5 metres. Starting at 5 metres with single maggot and I was soon catching Skimmers from 2oz to 6oz. But it wasn’t long before the tell-tell bubbles of Carp swimming through were evident, however, as the Carp weren’t really feeding I was soon back catching Skimmers with the occasional Ronnie. After it slowed I re-fed with the same amount of GB and went over with the Carp set up, kinder potting in some of the same feed. First put in I missed a bite, then latched in to my first and last Carp which weighed in at 15lb 8oz. I did try a few more times for another Carp by to no avail. I did keep a few Skimmers coming on the 5 metre line and to my amzement not foul hooking any Carp over this line. My Silvers weighed in at 12lb 2oz for a total of 27lb 10oz which put me second overall and the second in the Silvers.

The match was won by Colin Golding (pictured right) from un-fancied peg 5 with 31lb 4oz.- he's still got it. Colin caught three Carp on his usual plop – plop method. There was some discussion between Colin and Bob Price as to who owned the float and elastic that was attached to one of Colin’s’ Carp. Come on Colin let Bob have his new float back – you can keep the elastic, I am sure you will make use of it!!

The Silvers was won by Chris Snow (pictured right) with 15lb 13oz from peg 26. Chris fished at 5 metres with maggot, pellet and caster for a mainly Skimmer catch.

Full Result:
1. Colin Golding 31-4-0 peg 5

2. Mike Nicholls 27-10-0 peg 16
3. Rich Coles 27-03-0 peg 8
4. Ian Sheppard 20-08-0 peg 11
5. Chris Rolfe 17-13-0 peg 31
6. Chris Snow 15-13-0 peg 26

Top Silvers:

1. Chris Snow 15-13-0 peg 26
2. Mike Nicholls 12-02-0 peg 16
3. Chris Rolfe 11-04-0 peg 31 (plus one Skimmer left in his net – plonker)
4. Mike Jones peg 23 & Terry Bruton peg 24 both 10-08-0

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Wednesday 03/11/2010 - Carps AC - Cider Farm - Yarlington Mill

I once again stopped at Budgens in Churchill and had my usual breakfast Baggett - £2.40 and scrummy. I think the BBC should stop spending millions on trying to predict the weather and use one of the free websites which are far better than they are. David Angwin tonight was presenting for the BBC local news that the temperature would struggle to reach 11 degrees tomorrow and behind him on the weather board it was declaring 14 degrees!! Come on what’s going on – covering all aspects?

It was a good turn out for the last match at Cider Farm until March 2011. There were signs of the home team being a bit demob happy. Mark is off to South Africa and Mum and Dad off to Cancun after getting the cider fermenting. Have a good one.

So the match was on Yarlington Mill instead of Dabinett. In to the draw bucket and out comes peg 4. Umm, not that happy with this one as it doesn’t have any Silvers history and little Carp framing history either. With Anton Page on peg 40, Rod Wotton on peg 41 and Leyton Palmer on peg 14, I guessed that was the Carp pools taken care of. So it would be an out and out Silvers attack. I set up a Skimmer rig to fish in the middle of the open water at 7 metres for 4 mm expander over 2 mm expander, a Ronnie rig for the RH margin and a corn rig for the same margin if the Carp swayed me from the Silvers. I cupped on some hard 4 mils and corn in the RH margin, fed some dead reds (DR’s) at 4 metres and some 2 mm expander at 7 metres. I started with the Ronnie rig over DR’s and had a Ronnie followed by a Carp – then nothing. Out at 7 metres with the 4 mm expander which could only produce tiny 1 -2 oz Skimmers (last year’s fish I reckon). I caught about 40 then the Carp moved in (I am sure Carp are attracted by feeding Silvers as much as they are by the feed itself). I decided to try the margin with single maggot and had a run of very small Ronnie’s, again until the Carp moved in. I had no choice but to stick with these tiny fish to the end swapping between the two lines – what a long 5 ¾ hours it was. The biggest Silver fish was about 3oz!! Towards the end I was giving up the will to live loosing a hook in the reeds and a tangle in the last ten minutes actually cost me some coin. My accidental Carp weighed in at 32lb 2oz and my Silvers 7lb 14 oz giving a total of 40lb. This put me joint third with Colin Golding in the Silvers (2oz away from coinage) and I think 7th overall.

Peg 4 is dead opposite peg 11 which I think is an average Carp peg – certainly not a flyer. Nick Collier drew this peg and I had to look at him all day (see picture right with Nick grimacing - I think this distracted me a tad) catching Carp. Similar to me, Nick fell one short of gaining coin. What I must say I thought he did extremely well from this peg breaking the ton – not many have done that this year from it – if anyone.

The match was won by Rod Wotton from peg 41 with 130lb. Rod caught on banded pellet fished short to his Left fished at 11 and 13 metres over 4 mm pellet. Rod would have weighed 138lb had he not missed alternating his fish to net, having 8lb disqualified. Further, had Layton Palmer (pictured right - in agony) not had 40 minutes or so not fishing due to pains in his chest he might have overhauled Rod – who knows!!

What I di know is that Bob Prices Power Walker dosn't walk over a bed of fallen apples!!

The Silvers was won by Andy Gard from peg 46 with 9lb 3oz. Andy, similar to me caught tiny fish on maggot.

Full Result:
1. Rod Wotton 130-0-0 peg 41

2. Leyton Palmer 124-0-0 peg 14
3. Nick Collier 104-14-0 peg 11
4. Anton Page 95-03-0 peg 40
5. Martin Alexander 68-03-0 peg 32
6. Andy Hempstead 63-07-0 peg 36

Top Silvers:

1. Andy Gard 9-03-0 peg 46
2. Steve Jefferies 8-0-0 peg 25
3. Colin Golding 7-14-0 and Mike Nicholls 7-14-0 peg 4